Monday, August 31, 2015

Fall Trends Preview

The last day of August is upon us! This means that 1) Halloween weekend (aka my wisdom teeth recovery weekend) is in exactly two months, 2) the school where I volunteer is officially back in session, and 3) the Autumn Equinox is in only 23 days!  It'll be a Wednesday.  For a fun break from work and the real world, here's a quick peak at what Autumn apparently has in store for our closets:

1) Capes

2) Patches

3) Grey

4) Culottes

What do you think?  Remember to always shop eco-consciously, too! These styles may be "in" right now, but they're by no means new.  Thrift stores are better for the environment than firsthand ones, and you'll be able to get looks like these for less.
<3 Frances

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Sunday Soundtrack

What's one benefit of having to read a giant textbook and write a million essays?  Music!
This week, I heard several songs that I'm excited to share because they're edgy and soulful and fun, and they're making work a whole lot easier.  I thought it'd be good to post them today because tomorrow's Monday, and everyone needs a pre-Monday boost, right?

<3 Frances

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Liebster Award

Oh, wow! I'm very excited to have been nominated for a Liebster Award!  Thank you to Yasmin of The Aristo-chic.  Her blog is wonderful, and I love her name for it, too.

Liebster Award Rules
  • Once nominated, make a post thanking and linking your nominator's blog
  • Include the Liebster Award's sticker in the post as well
  • Nominate 10 other new bloggers that have 200 or less followers who you think are worthy of the award and include their links in your post. Also make sure that you let them know that they've been nominated by commenting on one of their posts. You can nominate the person who nominated you.
  • Answer the 10 questions asked to you by your nominator (these questions should be on their post). And make 10 questions of your own for your nominees to answer.
  • Finally copy these rules onto your post. 
My Answers to Yasmin's Questions
1. Which instrument would you love to play?
 I played flute when I was younger, and I would love to get better at that and learn how to "beat-box" the flute (it sounds weird, but it's actually super cool!).  I would also love to learn how to play the guitar. 
2. What three wishes would you ask a genie to grant you?
Oh, that's a difficult one!  I wish that everyone had empathy, that there were less stress in the world, and that things worked out the way they should.
3. What's your biggest fear and why?
I think my biggest fear would definitely be losing my family and being without them.  I get really scared during zombie apocalypse movies because there is often someone who has lost their family and is totally alone. 
4. Do you have a pet?
I have two hermit crabs. 
5. What's your favourite book?
The Crow Girl by Bodil Bredsdorff.
6. Where would you love to travel?
When I was little, I was obsessed with seeing Loch Ness.
7. If you were a mythical creature what would you be and why?
I'd like to be a fairy. They have such cute houses.
8. Do you have any tattoos or would you love to get one in the future?
I don't have any tattoos, and I don't plan to get any, but I've seen some very beautiful ones.
9. What's your favourite Tv show or movie?
My favorite TV show is Party of Five.
10. Why did you start a blog?
I love writing and talking about things like the news, budget-friendly vintage clothing, etc., and a blog seemed like a good place to do all of that.
My Questions
1. If you could meet any fictional character in real life, who would it be?  Why?
2. What is/was your favorite class in school?
3. What was your favorite book when you were little?
4. If you had a band, what would its name be? Why?
5. Who inspires you?
6. How do you de-stress?
7. When is the last time you genuinely laughed?  Why?
8. What do you want to be when you grow up? Why?
9. If you could have a superhero power, what would it be?
10. Which time period do you think you should live in?
The Nominees
<3 Frances

Thursday, August 27, 2015


Between textbook readings and study guides and essay prompts, I haven't had a lot of time to write any posts, but today I'm very excited to share a new discovery!  Being a bibliophile, I'm capable of completely losing myself in books, and libraries have a special place in my life.  Last year, I herd about this project called "Book Traces" that finds old books that have been written in, drawn on, etc., over the years and collects them as historical artifacts.  But you can still check a lot of them out! I'm seriously too excited about this.  You can visit the tumblr page here:  

A whole pile of clippings in a 1855 biography of the Rev. Sydney Smith, noted english wit and reformer. Among his various accomplishments was a rhyming recipe for salad dressing.Visit and submit your finds at!
The mark of a kiss left on page 50 of Life and Death in Rebel Prisons by Robert Kellogg (1865), an account of the conditions of Union prisoners of war during the American Civil War.
<3 Frances

Monday, August 24, 2015

Monday Inspiration

Since last week wasn't a full week, today is technically the first Monday of the school year for me, and it was admittedly a bit shocking to hear the alarm go off this morning at 5:15 and know that the beloved snooze button wasn't an option.  That said, though, that part of the day is over now, and it's on to the next ten hours (after that, school will be out, and it will be Monday evening, which is a world apart from Monday morning). 


With school and work back in full swing, it can be difficult to remember to do some of the important self-care things that help make everything survivable.  But it's crucial that you eat well, stay hydrated, get enough sleep (!), and don't freak out over the little things.  Make this year a happy one. 
<3 Frances

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Back to School Soundtrack

The academic year is upon us once again, and it almost feels like summer break never happened because my mind has returned to schedules and planners and trying not to get lost in the halls.  At least there's music...

Taylor Swift: "Wildest Dreams"

Lorde: "Everybody Wants to Rule the World"

Cat Power: "Metal Heart"

And, just for the sake of it being school again....

Simple Minds: "(Don't You) Forget About Me"

<3 Frances 

Monday, August 17, 2015

Movie Style: The Grand Budapest Hotel

Wes Anderson's movies all have a very particular visual style to them, and The Grand Budapest Hotel is no exception.  The storyboarding, costumes, and set design make each scene a work of art, and it almost seems like the movie's aesthetic falls somewhere between a dollhouse, a play, and a painting.  (One of the key techniques in capturing this unique feel is symmetry, the effects of which are explained in this interesting article.)  Words, however, can't quite do justice to The Grand Budapest Hotel, so, without further adieu, here are some of the pictures we think capture it the best in all of its quirky pink glory:
<3 Frances  

Friday, August 14, 2015


If you've been keeping up with the news lately, then you've most likely heard about the warehouse explosions that devastated Tianjin, in China, on Wednesday.  The death toll has been rising (last night it was over 50), and at least 500 people are injured.  The chemicals released by the explosion are also very toxic and reactive with water, which is making efforts to evacuate people and clean up the mess even more difficult.  Industrial disasters like this one are heartbreaking, and I'm posting to hopefully spread the message that Tianjin, as well as many other places in the world, needs a lot of support heading its way.  <3 <3 <3
<3 Frances

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Wisdom Teeth and Mid-Week Playlist

nightmare before christmas
It's the last week of summer break, and a cool breeze outside is making it feel almost like autumn already.  I'm excited for autumn, I suppose, even though I'll miss being in my little introverted bubble of calm all day (sad face), but it's fun to see the Halloween decorations in all the stores.  That said, I will be having my wisdom teeth removed the day before Halloween/two days before my birthday, which means I will spend the Halloween weekend I've been looking forward to all year in a sort of painkiller-induced daze. 

Alice Bowman: "Waiting"

Atlas Genius: "If So"

Damien Rice: "My Favourite Faded Fantasy"

Kasey Chambers: "Is God Real?"
<3 Frances

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Remembering Hiroshima

This past Thursday marked 70 years since the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.  The subject of the atomic bomb is one that is as emotionally-driven as it is scientifically-driven, and, while there are many grey areas and arguments on both sides, now is a time to remember all those lives lost in the wake of the explosion, as well as the lives lost to other nuclear incidents throughout history and to the Second World War itself. The use of paper lanterns to honor the victims of Hiroshima and Nagasaki is very beautiful, and, instead of sharing images of devastation and loss, I'm going to share photos of them.

<3 Frances

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Schools Around the World

As August moves forward, the images of beach balls and sunglasses that accompany the summer holidays disappear and are replaced by those of school supplies and changing foliage.  The academic year is approaching rather rapidly, and it's intimidating.  But when you think about how many people around the world have limited (or no) access to education, you realize just how lucky you are to have to lug a physics textbook around in your backpack and interpret Shakespeare.  These images of classrooms around the world (from Take Part and The Guardian) are not just visually intriguing but also eye-opening.  All of them show hardworking students and teachers, but the obvious disparities are heartbreaking.


school in tajikistan

finish second graders

school rajasthan india

classroom in berlin germany

refugee classroom democratic republic congo
Democratic Republic of the Congo
chilean classroom in school bus

classroom victoria austrailia

girls school kabul afghanistan


math class tokyo japan high school

kingdergarteners on ipads virginia school
United States

Kenya school

<3 Frances

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Mori Kei

In the midst of studying and packing and unpacking and getting ready for back-to-school, I stumbled upon a few pictures of "mori kei" fashion and fell somewhat in love with it.  Mori is Japanese for forest, and kei means style, so, essentially, mori kei is forest style.  It's sort of like earthy bohemian and vintage and lolita and storybook fairytale all rolled into one, and it's adorable.  I also really think it's great for the coming autumn and the academic year.  Sweaters, school, and crisp red leaves go well together.

<3 Frances